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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all! We have been admiring Kia Souls for a while now on the road, and are now looking at getting a new 2023 Kia Soul for my twins to share while at college. Trying to decide on trimline. We are interested in getting as many upgrades and safety features as possible, so leaning towards the GT with tech package. If not the GT Tech, then the EX.
My kids both have auditory sensitivities, my son more so than my daughter (he’s on the autism spectrum with no intellectual impairment). We test drove a 2020 Kia Soul (because we can’t find any new Kia Souls right now in the area to drive) and liked everything about it except there was a lot of road noise when we drove on the highway at 60 mph or higher. My questions are:

*Is that usual for the Kia Soul to have significant road/wind noise driving at high speeds on an interstate?

*Would the GT-line trimline, which appeals to us as far as available options and sporty looks, be louder or quieter than the other trimlines with road noise?

*What are the pros and cons of having the 18-inch wheels vs the 16 or 17? Better or worse on ride and noise?

*On the Kia site, the interior of the GT has red accents and a couple salesmen have told me this is usual for the GT. This seems out of place to me if the exterior of the car is, for instance, Neptune blue (the color we are leaning towards). I see some Souls on the road with a thin red line which I like, and which would bring the whole look together to me, but that doesn’t seem to be an option for 2023 exteriors. Any opinions on that? Am I missing something?

*Are the LED headlights brighter than the standard ones the other trimlines come with? I notice Consumer Reports rated the headlights a 2 out of 5. My 2018 Ford Flex rated a 2 out of 5, and the dim headlights have always been a negative to me (otherwise, love my Ford Flex, boxy car fans unite!).

*Is the Harmon Kardon sound system, only available with the GT tech package, a significant improvement on the regular sound system? Any pros or cons on that?

Hope I posted this all okay. If I should post it elsewhere, let me know. Thanks.
 

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You can use the Kia site to compare different trims. In my opinion, the LX with technology package is the best bang for your buck. It has all the important safety features and also, the 2023 has new headlights, the reviews you may have read on the not so great headlights are for 2020-2022.

 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Yes, I have been on the Kia website and looked at all the trims. But I don't think the answers to my questions are on the website. I wanted to hear from people who have experience with Kia Souls firsthand. Thanks.
 

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The 2023 is a refresh of the Soul and I don’t think anyone here has one yet. But the Soul is shaped like a refrigerator on wheels so it’s not going to be as quiet as an aerodynamic sedan on the highway. But road noise has improved a lot over the years. My 2019 second generation is much quieter than my 2011 first generation. I would think this has continued on the 3rd generation 2020 and newer. And in my opinion the 16” tires will give a better (softer) ride. Usually the larger rims will have low profile tires on them and you’ll feel more bumps and have a rougher ride.
 

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My kids both have auditory sensitivities...We test drove a 2020 Kia Soul ...there was a lot of road noise when we drove on the highway at 60 mph or higher. My questions are:

*Is that usual for the Kia Soul to have significant road/wind noise driving at high speeds on an interstate?
The Kia Soul is a boxy, somewhat lower-priced budget car. It isn't going to be loaded up with sound-deadening material (which would add to the production cost).

Due to the boxy shape alone I would expect it to be noisier than a similiarly priced sedan and I would certainly expect it to be noisier than a higher-level, higher-priced vehicle.

With your kids auditory sensitivities I definitely think you would need to drive a 2023 yourself to hear first-hand cause what is acceptable, maybe hardly noticeable to one person may be annoying / distracting as heck to your kids.

Recall a thread from a few years ago where a poster modded his Kia Soul by installing sound deadening material. Found it, poster "did it just for the quiet ride"

*Would the GT-line trimline...be louder or quieter than the other trimlines with road noise?
Unless explicitly mentioned in the trim description, I would assume a higher trim to have the same amount of sound insulation has the lower trim(s).

*What are the pros and cons of having the 18-inch wheels vs the 16 or 17? Better or worse on ride and noise?
I've never had 18-inch wheels but seem to recall occasionally seeing threads on here where posters have"down-graded" / down-sized from 18-inch to 16-inch to have a softer (and perhaps I assume) quieter ride.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The 2023 is a refresh of the Soul and I don’t think anyone here has one yet. But the Soul is shaped like a refrigerator on wheels so it’s not going to be as quiet as an aerodynamic sedan on the highway. But road noise has improved a lot over the years. My 2019 second generation is much quieter than my 2011 first generation. I would think this has continued on the 3rd generation 2020 and newer. And in my opinion the 16” tires will give a better (softer) ride. Usually the larger rims will have low profile tires on them and you’ll feel more bumps and have a rougher ride.
Ok good to know about the refresh aspect. The 2023 is pretty similar to the 2022 and 2021 Souls with just some changes to the exterior front and back, right?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The Kia Soul is a boxy, somewhat lower-priced budget car. It isn't going to be loaded up with sound-deadening material (which would add to the production cost).

Due to the boxy shape alone I would expect it to be noisier than a similiarly priced sedan and I would certainly expect it to be noisier than a higher-level, higher-priced vehicle.

With your kids auditory sensitivities I definitely think you would need to drive a 2023 yourself to hear first-hand cause what is acceptable, maybe hardly noticeable to one person may be annoying / distracting as heck to your kids.

Recall a thread from a few years ago where a poster modded his Kia Soul by installing sound deadening material. Found it, poster "did it just for the quiet ride"



Unless explicitly mentioned in the trim description, I would assume a higher trim to have the same amount of sound insulation has the lower trim(s).



I've never had 18-inch wheels but seem to recall occasionally seeing threads on here where posters have"down-graded" / down-sized from 18-inch to 16-inch to have a softer (and perhaps I assume) quieter ride.
That's all very helpful, thank you. I will check out the sound deadening idea, as my kids really like the boxy look of the Soul so not sure what other car we could consider in our price range. I was suspecting the 18 inch tires might be louder so it's good to get confirmation on that.
This is making me lean towards the EX, or towards getting the GT and changing out the tires if needed, but seems expensive and kind of a waste to do that.
Anyone know if the LED headlights available on the GT are brighter than the headlights on the EX?
 

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Ok good to know about the refresh aspect. The 2023 is pretty similar to the 2022 and 2021 Souls with just some changes to the exterior front and back, right?
Yes, it’s the same generation, just a mid cycle refresh. Some options were changed around too. Cluster gauges are digital in all trims now and they discontinued the turbo version. But the way it rides and how much sound deadening likely hasn’t changed. Not that it’s noisy, but that is subjective. The best way to see if it’s too noisy for you is to find one to test drive. I don’t think it will be any worse or better than cars in it’s class. Also yes the trim with LED will more than likely be “better” than the lower trims that use halogen.

I’m not a fan of LED so this is just my opinion. I think they’re too bright and blind on coming cars even factory LEDs hurt my eyes. And when it stops working (and chances are it will) you have to replace the whole assembly and not just a simple bulb like the halogen. That’s the main reason why I dislike them. I like the ease and low cost of just replacing a bulb. /end rant 😆
 
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Beginning with Gen 2 Kia did up the sound deadening materials used in the Soul, including airline grade foam used in dead air spaces. I've been impressed with the low cabin noise and build quality. It's not Genesis level, but on par, if not better than other brands. Tires and road conditions of course affect noise levels in all cars.

For fun take a look-see at actual decibel levels.
Cabin Noise Scores — Alex on Autos
Auto Decibel Database

2022 decibel reading at 16:15 ⬇
 

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Hi all! We have been admiring Kia Souls for a while now on the road, and are now looking at getting a new 2023 Kia Soul for my twins to share while at college. Trying to decide on trimline. We are interested in getting as many upgrades and safety features as possible, so leaning towards the GT with tech package. If not the GT Tech, then the EX.
My kids both have auditory sensitivities, my son more so than my daughter (he’s on the autism spectrum with no intellectual impairment). We test drove a 2020 Kia Soul (because we can’t find any new Kia Souls right now in the area to drive) and liked everything about it except there was a lot of road noise when we drove on the highway at 60 mph or higher. My questions are:

*Is that usual for the Kia Soul to have significant road/wind noise driving at high speeds on an interstate?

*Would the GT-line trimline, which appeals to us as far as available options and sporty looks, be louder or quieter than the other trimlines with road noise?

*What are the pros and cons of having the 18-inch wheels vs the 16 or 17? Better or worse on ride and noise?

*On the Kia site, the interior of the GT has red accents and a couple salesmen have told me this is usual for the GT. This seems out of place to me if the exterior of the car is, for instance, Neptune blue (the color we are leaning towards). I see some Souls on the road with a thin red line which I like, and which would bring the whole look together to me, but that doesn’t seem to be an option for 2023 exteriors. Any opinions on that? Am I missing something?

*Are the LED headlights brighter than the standard ones the other trimlines come with? I notice Consumer Reports rated the headlights a 2 out of 5. My 2018 Ford Flex rated a 2 out of 5, and the dim headlights have always been a negative to me (otherwise, love my Ford Flex, boxy car fans unite!).

*Is the Harmon Kardon sound system, only available with the GT tech package, a significant improvement on the regular sound system? Any pros or cons on that?

Hope I posted this all okay. If I should post it elsewhere, let me know. Thanks.
It’s easy to add the red line, which I did with 3/4 inch striping tape. Mine is a 2022 EX and the power seat for my height is almost essential to easily change positions on longer trips. In my driving experience there is road noise where exposed aggregate is the road surface. On new blacktop it’s a very quiet driving experience. Safety features are important and effective. I wish insurance companies would consider that on their rates.
Automotive parking light Sky Tire Wheel Automotive side marker light
 

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Hi all! We have been admiring Kia Souls for a while now on the road, and are now looking at getting a new 2023 Kia Soul for my twins to share while at college. Trying to decide on trimline. We are interested in getting as many upgrades and safety features as possible, so leaning towards the GT with tech package. If not the GT Tech, then the EX.
My kids both have auditory sensitivities, my son more so than my daughter (he’s on the autism spectrum with no intellectual impairment). We test drove a 2020 Kia Soul (because we can’t find any new Kia Souls right now in the area to drive) and liked everything about it except there was a lot of road noise when we drove on the highway at 60 mph or higher. My questions are:

*Is that usual for the Kia Soul to have significant road/wind noise driving at high speeds on an interstate?

*Would the GT-line trimline, which appeals to us as far as available options and sporty looks, be louder or quieter than the other trimlines with road noise?

*What are the pros and cons of having the 18-inch wheels vs the 16 or 17? Better or worse on ride and noise?

*On the Kia site, the interior of the GT has red accents and a couple salesmen have told me this is usual for the GT. This seems out of place to me if the exterior of the car is, for instance, Neptune blue (the color we are leaning towards). I see some Souls on the road with a thin red line which I like, and which would bring the whole look together to me, but that doesn’t seem to be an option for 2023 exteriors. Any opinions on that? Am I missing something?

*Are the LED headlights brighter than the standard ones the other trimlines come with? I notice Consumer Reports rated the headlights a 2 out of 5. My 2018 Ford Flex rated a 2 out of 5, and the dim headlights have always been a negative to me (otherwise, love my Ford Flex, boxy car fans unite!).

*Is the Harmon Kardon sound system, only available with the GT tech package, a significant improvement on the regular sound system? Any pros or cons on that?

Hope I posted this all okay. If I should post it elsewhere, let me know. Thanks.
Hi all! We have been admiring Kia Souls for a while now on the road, and are now looking at getting a new 2023 Kia Soul for my twins to share while at college. Trying to decide on trimline. We are interested in getting as many upgrades and safety features as possible, so leaning towards the GT with tech package. If not the GT Tech, then the EX.
My kids both have auditory sensitivities, my son more so than my daughter (he’s on the autism spectrum with no intellectual impairment). We test drove a 2020 Kia Soul (because we can’t find any new Kia Souls right now in the area to drive) and liked everything about it except there was a lot of road noise when we drove on the highway at 60 mph or higher. My questions are:

*Is that usual for the Kia Soul to have significant road/wind noise driving at high speeds on an interstate?

*Would the GT-line trimline, which appeals to us as far as available options and sporty looks, be louder or quieter than the other trimlines with road noise?

*What are the pros and cons of having the 18-inch wheels vs the 16 or 17? Better or worse on ride and noise?

*On the Kia site, the interior of the GT has red accents and a couple salesmen have told me this is usual for the GT. This seems out of place to me if the exterior of the car is, for instance, Neptune blue (the color we are leaning towards). I see some Souls on the road with a thin red line which I like, and which would bring the whole look together to me, but that doesn’t seem to be an option for 2023 exteriors. Any opinions on that? Am I missing something?

*Are the LED headlights brighter than the standard ones the other trimlines come with? I notice Consumer Reports rated the headlights a 2 out of 5. My 2018 Ford Flex rated a 2 out of 5, and the dim headlights have always been a negative to me (otherwise, love my Ford Flex, boxy car fans unite!).

*Is the Harmon Kardon sound system, only available with the GT tech package, a significant improvement on the regular sound system? Any pros or cons on that?

Hope I posted this all okay. If I should post it elsewhere, let me know. Thanks.
There are tires made to reduce cabin road noise. Some claim up to 9db. I have snow tires which use softer rubber, I’m told, and they decrease cabin noise. I had Michelin’s at one time, on another car, and the ride was noisy but the tires lasted over 80 thousand miles and were still good when I sold the car. I like the Ford Flex since it wasn't so streamlined that it wasted carrying space. And as answered by another member the Soul is not the Queen of the wing tunnel. But the chunky design i like and it’s carrying capacity is not reduced by a streamlined design. And despite no streamlining I get between 35 and 42 mpg. College students will be loading that car to its capacity while cranking up the music to where any road sound would be insignificant.
 

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There are tires made to reduce cabin road noise. Some claim up to 9db. I have snow tires which use softer rubber, I’m told, and they decrease cabin noise. I had Michelin’s at one time, on another car, and the ride was noisy but the tires lasted over 80 thousand miles and were still good when I sold the car. I like the Ford Flex since it wasn't so streamlined that it wasted carrying space. And as answered by another member the Soul is not the Queen of the wing tunnel. But the chunky design i like and it’s carrying capacity is not reduced by a streamlined design. And despite no streamlining I get between 35 and 42 mpg. College students will be loading that car to its capacity while cranking up the music to where any road sound would be insignificant.
Michelin CrossClimate2 tires (17" on '16 Soul+) are extremely quiet and run well in Winter road conditions.
 
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